Daily Local & Regional NewsWatch
LA Police Protective League


Los Angeles
Police Protective League
the union that represents the
rank and file LAPD officers

  Daily Local & Regional NewsWatch

Daily News Digest
from LA Police Protective League

August 19, 2020
Law Enforcement News

$150,000 In Rewards Offered For Information In 3 Pacoima Murders
Rewards were offered Tuesday for help solving three separate murders in Pacoima. Rewards of $50,000 were announced Tuesday by L.A. police in each of the murders. The most recent happened on May 9 at about 10:40 p.m. Police say Davon Pledger, 26, was outside a friend’s house on Cornelius Street when three suspects approached in a dark sedan and shot him several times. On Feb. 22, Omar Medina was attacked by a group of men while at a party near Montague Street and Telfair Avenue. Police say three men took out handguns and shot Medina to death. Michael Kelly, 18, was found shot to death on Feb. 18, 2019 by patrol officers responding to a “shots fired” call in the 12800 block of Van Nuys Boulevard. Anyone with information about any of these murders can contact LAPD Detective Sharon Kim at (818) 374-9550.

$50,000 Reward Offered For Information In Fatal South L.A. Shooting
A $50,000 reward is being offered for information in a South Los Angeles shooting that left a 55-year-old man dead last November. The incident unfolded about midnight Nov. 9 when James Chambers was standing outside a home along the 1700 block of West 24th Street in the Adams-Normandie neighborhood of South L.A. The assailant ran up to Chambers from behind a tree and shot him. He was last seen running south on Congress Avenue from 24th, police said. Chambers, who was lying unresponsive in the home’s driveway, was pronounced dead at the scene. LAPD described the assailant only as being male and said that he was a “lone suspect.” Anyone with information about the shooting is urged to call Officer Johnson at 323-786-5110.

$50,000 Reward Offered In Fatal Hit-and-Run Of 50-Year-Old Los Angeles Man
A $50,000 reward is being offered for information leading to the arrest of the driver behind the wheel of a fatal hit-and-run that claimed the life of a 50-year-old Los Angeles man. Authorities do not have a description of the vehicle or driver that ran over the man, who was later identified as Joe Baines. The Los Angeles Police Department said that around 11:50 p.m. on August 12, Baines was laying in the south alley of the 200 block of West 60th Street when he was run over by a vehicle. The driver failed to identify themselves or render aid as required by law, the LAPD said in a statement Tuesday. "Drivers are reminded that if they become involved in a collision, they should pull over and stop as soon as it is safe to do so, notify emergency services, and remain at scene to identify themselves," the statement continued.

LAPD Reports 3 New Coronavirus Cases, LAFD Reports 1 New Case
The Los Angeles Police Department reported Tuesday that three additional employees have tested positive for COVID-19. So far, 513 employees have tested positive, according to Jessica Kellogg of the Emergency Operations Center. Kellogg said that 123 employees are at home recovering or self-isolating due to exposure, and 415 have returned to work. In July, the department announced two coronavirus-related deaths, including one sworn officer. The Los Angeles Fire Department reported one new coronavirus case on Tuesday, bringing the department’s total to 159.

3 Party Home Addresses Sent To Los Angeles Mayor's Office For Possible Utility Shut-Off
Addresses of at least three homes that allegedly were the site of parties during the coronavirus pandemic were forwarded to Mayor Eric Garcetti's office to be considered for utility shut-offs, it was reported Tuesday. Garcetti announced on Aug. 5 that he would authorize the Department of Water & Power to shut off utilities to homes and businesses that host "egregious" gatherings amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The Los Angeles Police Department responded to complaints of noisy gatherings and issued citations at 13 homes last weekend, according to the Los Angeles Times. The LAPD officers' union pushed back against the potential use of officers in Garcetti's efforts to shut off utility service at homes where large parties have occurred. The Los Angeles Police Protective League, the union representing LAPD officers, tweeted its opposition to using officers in utility cutoffs. "Mayor Garcetti wants to reimagine policing. He should send his civilian staff to turn off people's electricity & cut off their water," the union tweeted Aug. 9. "Let officers deal with the rise in shootings and killings in LA. We need a leader and not a political contortionist." 

Search On For Man Suspected Of Hate Crime, Assaulting And Robbing Transgender Women
Two transgender women were robbed and assaulted by a man in Hollywood, and police are investigating it as a hate crime. The attacker approached the women about 2:15 a.m. Monday and offered to buy them merchandise at a store in the 6500 block of Hollywood Boulevard, near Wilcox Avenue, according to the LAPD. He then refused to pay and the women left, police said. The suspect approached them again with a metal bar and demanded one of the women's shoes and bracelet, police said. She complied out of fear, and the suspect grabbed her hand and forced her to walk a short distance with him before she could escape. He then assaulted the second victim with a bottle, knocking the woman to the ground. The approximately 25-year-old man is described as Black, 6 feet tall, 180 pounds, with black hair and brown eyes.

New Data Shows LA Neighborhoods With Most Car Thefts Amid COVID-19
While more people are staying home during the pandemic, a record number of car thefts are being reported in parts of the Los Angeles area. The first three months of 2020 saw similar numbers of car thefts compared to the same period in 2019. But from April to July, when coronavirus closures were at their peak, there were significant increases in car thefts. The number of stolen car incidents increased on average by nearly 60% compared to the same months in 2019. For June, car thefts nearly doubled. The most recent LAPD crime data from showed the highest number of thefts happening in Boyle Heights, Sun Valley, Historic South-Central, Downtown L.A. and Van Nuys in the first seven months of the year. Boyle Heights topped the list with the most car thefts.

Police Looking For Woman With Dementia Missing From West L.A. Care Facility
Authorities Tuesday sought public help to find a 64-year-old woman with dementia who went missing from a care facility in the West Los Angeles area. Muriel Douet was last seen on Monday afternoon in the 1300 block of Sepulveda Boulevard, according to the Los Angeles Police Department. Douet is Black, 5-foot-5 and 150 pounds, with gray hair and black eyes. When last seen, she was wearing pajamas and a black hat with a blue logo. Her last known residence is in the city of Yucaipa. Anyone knowing her whereabouts was urged to call the LAPD West Los Angeles Station watch commander at 310-444-0701; 877-LAPD-247; or Crime Stoppers at 800-222-TIPS.

3 Men Arrested For Allegedly Stealing $500,000 In Cash, Jewelry From Homes Across Southern California
Three men were arrested for allegedly stealing cash, jewelry and other valuables worth nearly half a million dollars from 25 homes across the Antelope Valley, San Fernando Valley and Ventura County, officials said Tuesday. After a nine-month multi-agency investigation, authorities served search warrants on July 31 at three locations in the Antelope Valley and made five arrests, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department said in a news release. They also recovered three illegally possessed firearms, one of which was equipped with a thirty-round magazine. The nighttime “hot prowl” burglaries took place in at least 25 homes across three counties, where cash, jewelry and personal valuables worth nearly $500,000 were stolen, the department said. The burglars often used rental cars and vehicles with paper license plates.

21 Arrested In $250K Coronavirus Unemployment Fraud Scheme Using California Inmates' Information
More than 20 people in California were arrested in connection with an elaborate scheme in which they used the personal information of 30 inmates to file more than $250,000 worth of bogus unemployment claims, officials said. The San Mateo County Sheriff’s Office announced Saturday the discovery of a “large-scale Pandemic Unemployment Assistance fraud ring” run out of San Mateo County’s Maguire Correctional Facility and responsible for 16 claims that were filed between June 9 and July 30, the department said in a press release. The investigation began after a law enforcement officer within the jail “overheard inmates conversing about these fraudulent claims,” the release states. So far, police have discovered more than $250,000 in illegitimate payments and have recovered $150,000 in cash, officials said.

Victims Of Golden State Killer Finally Confront Him In Court With Stories Of Pain And Survival
Some victims want to show how they overcame and healed. Some still search for answers and reparation. And others, unable to exact emotional revenge on their attacker, seek to humiliate him. The victims of Joseph James DeAngelo Jr., the former police officer whose violent crimes through the 1970s and 1980s terrorized Californians across the state and earned him the moniker Golden State Killer, finally get their say in court with three days of impact statements that began Tuesday, leading up to his sentencing on Friday. DeAngelo, 74, has admitted to killing 13 people, starting with a Visalia college instructor seeking to thwart the abduction of his daughter in 1975, and ending with the rape and murder of a teenage girl in Orange County in 1986. His plea deal includes 53 attacks on 87 victims in 11 counties, including 50 rapes, but leaves out two sexual attacks and a shooting that also have been blamed on him.

Public Safety News

Los Angeles County Reports Another 64 Coronavirus Deaths
Los Angeles County reported another 64 deaths due to the coronavirus Wednesday, but a lack of results from a large lab resulted in an unusually low number of 1,003 newly confirmed cases of COVID-19. The 64 fatalities, along with five reported by health officials in Long Beach, lifted the countywide total since the start of the pandemic to 5,340. With the county reporting 1,003 new cases and Long Beach adding 59 more, the countywide cumulative total of confirmed cases rose to 224,090. The county Department of Public Health blamed Tuesday's low number of newly confirmed cases on missing reports from "one of the larger" testing labs. The county is also still awaiting final numbers from a state backlog caused by a computer glitch that could impact some of the testing data from the past two to three weeks.

Newsom Declares Statewide Emergency As Fires Burn Across California
Gov. Gavin Newsom has declared a statewide emergency in order to help California respond to the fires burning across the state amid an extreme heat wave that brought more warnings about power outages on Tuesday. More than 30 wildfires are burning across California, including nearly a dozen that started in the last two days, according to officials with the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection and a Times analysis. While the containment of some fires is increasing, other blazes are being sparked and are growing amid a combination of excessive heat and lightning from thunderstorms induced by a tropical storm in the Pacific Ocean. Air quality was bad in many parts of the state due to the fires and weather. 

About the LAPPL Formed in 1923, the Los Angeles Police Protective League (LAPPL) represents the more than 9,900 dedicated and professional sworn members of the Los Angeles Police Department. The LAPPL serves to advance the interests of LAPD officers through legislative and legal advocacy, political action and education. The LAPPL can be found on the Web at: